Associate Research Analyst (Cybersecurity) - ESDA Division

800 Maine Ave SW, Washington, DC 20024, USA ● Virtual Req #400
Thursday, September 8, 2022
CNA fosters an inclusive culture that values diverse backgrounds and perspectives. Our flexible and engaging work environment encourages iterative and creative collaboration at every stage of the problem solving process. Our employees are committed to helping clients develop effective solutions to better manage their programs through scientific, data-driven approaches. We are looking for creative and innovative individuals to help carry out our mission.

CNA is currently seeking an Associate Research Analyst for our Enterprise Systems and Data Analysis (ESDA) division in our Institute for Public Research. Candidates will join a strong team researching cybersecurity techniques, industry and government trends, and evaluation of the information security needs to support integration of emerging technologies and new entrants, such as Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), into the National Airspace System in a safe, efficient, and secure manner. This will involve aligning recommendations to industry cybersecurity best practices and government policies, evaluating concepts and use cases, working with subject matter experts and stakeholders, and supporting the definition of security requirements for future system design. Work may also involve supporting design, use case, and technical specifications for novel artificial intelligence (AI) / machine learning (ML) applications to support new entrants in aviation.

The candidate will support efforts to standardize the approach to identity and access management of aviation systems, by working with program stakeholders, evaluating system needs, and integrating security into a harmonized concept. The candidate will also evaluate cybersecurity-focused analytic methods, AI/ML system design and best practices, and help our government partners to evaluate AI/ML technologies used in aviation. Candidates will also help evaluate use cases, applications, and considerations of the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML) for ensuring cybersecurity of systems within the government.

The location of this position is flexible and can be either remote or onsite.


Staff at this level will provide research, analytical, and technical support on a range of projects.



1. Under close supervision, conducts research and analysis that meets CNA’s quality standards on focused, structured questions.  Can effectively apply standard, routine, and well-established analytic methodologies. With minimal direction and supervision, routinely produces analysis that is logical and traceable as well as objective and unbiased.  Shows some analytic creativity.


2. Develops rudimentary institutional knowledge of primary clients/sponsors; their culture, organization, and issues.


3. Contributes productively and harmoniously to the work of others; treats everyone respectfully, professionally and fairly.  Keeps others informed.  Actively engages with colleagues and works with manager to identify opportunities for collaborations within team and division. Seeks out others working on similar topics.


4. Supports business development efforts and/or marketing activities by conducting background research and helping prepare materials under the direction of more experienced staff.


5. Limited interaction with sponsors/clients and their study POCs under the supervision of an experienced colleague.


6. Impact largely confined to individual project work.


7. Demonstrates basic, effective communication skills, both written and oral.  Can effectively present work to colleagues and CNA managers.


8. Works under close supervision on focused, well-structured pieces of projects.


9. Exhibits a positive attitude in interactions with colleagues and clients/sponsors.  Serves as an effective member of project or research team by supporting leadership as needed.


10. Performs other duties as assigned.


1. Education: Minimum Master’s degree in a relevant field or equivalent experience.


2. Experience: Typical minimum requirements Master’s & 0+ years of experience in research and analysis.


3. Skills: 

  • Microsoft Office; database management; good interpersonal and oral and written communication skills; strong critical thinking and organizational skills; knowledge of research techniques.
  • Ability to make significant contributions to projects/analyses; 
  • Strong analytic curiosity/ creativity;  
  • Ability to operate independently in the execution of assignments; 
  • Ability to work in a multi-disciplinary environment; 
  • Strong critical thinking skills; 
  • Knowledge of research techniques; 
  • Knowledge of cybersecurity techniques; 
  • Knowledge of and experience with system development, software assurance, and systems engineering practices; 
  • Strong planning and organizational skills; 
  • Excellent interpersonal, oral and written communication skills; 
  • Ability to interact positively and somewhat independently with clients


4. Other:

  • Serves as a team member contributing to research.
  • Knowledge of FAA and international aviation domain, information technology policies, unmanned aircraft systems operations preferred. 
  • Cybersecurity certifications, such as CompTIA Security+ preferred
  • Ability to obtain and maintain an Active Secret Security Clearance
***Voluntary (but highly desired) document***
Please include a personal statement as part of your application. A personal statement is a chance for us to get to know you. The statement is your opportunity to share your goals, interests, influences and show us that you will be a valuable asset to our organization. Please click here for personal statement guidelines – Click here

Personal statements will not be used as an elimination criteria for this position. They will only be used to enhance a candidate’s application



CNA is committed to providing equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, religion, color, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), parental status, national origin, age, disability, family medical history or genetic information, political affiliation, military service and protected veterans, or other non-merit based factors. In addition to federal legal requirements, CNA complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities. These protections extend to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting and hiring practices, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training and career development programs. For more information about EEO protections, please view the EEO is the law posters here: "EEO is the Law" Poster""EEO Poster Supplement". The pay transparency policy is available here: Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Poster. To be considered for hire, all individuals applying for positions with CNA are subject to a background investigation. For positions requiring access to classified information, U.S. citizenship is required. Individuals will also be subject to an additional government background investigation, and continued employment eligibility is contingent upon the ability to obtain and maintain an active security clearance.

Other details

  • Job Family Research
  • Job Function Career Path II - Expert & Research Specialist
Location on Google Maps
  • 800 Maine Ave SW, Washington, DC 20024, USA
  • Virtual